Clara Barton

By: Caroline Pitalo

Image of Clara Barton

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Clarissa Harlowe Barton was born on December 25 1821 in Oxford, Massachusetts. Clara attended Liberal Institute in Clinton, New York, began teaching at 15 and started a free school which grew to be quite large. After being associated with the International Red Cross, while in Europe, Clara campaigned for an American Red Cross which she founded in 1881, and was made it’s first president, until she resigned in 1904. She also wrote an American amendment that provided relief during tragic event. Clara first found her nursing callin when her brother was in an accident and she treated him. She is referred to as the ‘angel of the battlefield’ because of her life’s work. During the Civil War, Clara was an independent nurse, who went through battle lines to help distribute supplies for Union Army, searched for missing soldiers and nursed the wounded. She worked at US Patent Office in Washington DC, but was fired when the Democrats won presidency in 1865. As well as a nurse, teacher and founder, Clara was also a suffragist, humanitarian, and author. She wrote The Story of my Childhood, The Red Cross in Peace and War, and the History of the Red Cross. After resigning from the Red Cross, Clara remained active by giving speeches and lectures until her death on April 12 1912, in Glen Echo, Maryland.

Clara Barton was on the Unites States Postage stamps for founding the American Red Cross.

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  • founder of American Red Cross
  • American nurse
  • 'Angel of the Battlefield'
  • suffragist

Image of the monument on the Antietam battlefield in honor to Clara Barton.

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Connection between Clara Barton and Antietam

Clara Barton was a nurse who provided supplies and nursed the wounded at the battle of Antietam. Because of her heroic actions during the battle, there is a monument that honors her on the battlefield. The plaque reads "Clara Barton, during the battle of Antietam, September 17 1862, Clara Barton brought supplies and nursing aid to the wounded on this battlefield. This act of love and mercy led to the birth of the present American National Red Cross."
"I may be compelled to face danger, but never fear it, and while our soldiers can stand and fight, I can stand and feed and nurse them." -Clara Barton

The following is a biography video about Clara Barton's life.

Clara Barton - Mini Biography